Wednesday, August 11, 2010


On June 25, 2010, State of Ohio Auditor Mary Taylor submitted her report detailing the amount of money missing from the Stark treasury during the tenure of Stark County Treasurer Gary D. Zeigler.

Some $2.46 million of the missing funds were attributed to former Chief Deputy Vince Frustaci who admitted in federal court (responding to a Bill of Information filed by the U.S. Attorney's office)  the same date that he had stolen the money.  About $500,000 in additional missing money still has not been attributed to anyone.

Immediately, questions began to be asked by area media, including the SCPR, about the recovery of the missing money for the Stark County taxpayers.

The answer coming out of the Stark County prosecutor's office?

Nothing can be done until Frustaci has been sentenced as scheduled on September 7, 2010.

Yours truly knew that the answer was so much baloney as did attorney and civic activist Craig T. Conley.

But apparently the rest of the Stark County media did not.  The erroneous response got published in The Rep and other media with the implicit indicia:  "if John Ferrero says it, then it must be the gospel - a least as far as the law is concerned."

The first that anyone got a clue that Ferrero was in denial, that he had ever said that no action could be taken against Zeigler until September 7th came and went, was in a letter to Conley dated August 5, 2010.

Here is a copy of the relevant portions of the letter.

At his sarcastic best, Conley responded to Ferrero in two subsequent letters.

The first one (August 9th).

As if he was short on sarcasm, Conley follows up with a second even more sardonic letter yesterday.

So, what should Stark Countians make of all of this?

Stark Countians should be distressed that the county's lead law enforcer appears unable to get his story straight.  Conley's use of a sarcastic approach (Ferrero is right, but everyone else is wrong; we should all apologize) may be humorous, however, it ought to be troublesome that the man who makes law enforcement decisions that affect all of us cannot - apparently - admit when he is wrong and go about correcting the error.

It seems that "I'm sorry, I made a mistake" is not in the makeup of John Dee Ferrero.

For the Stark County Political Report's part, Stark Countians should be looking to retire Prosecutor Ferrero from public office come December 31, 2012.

For The Report, Ferrero's handling of the Devies case was enough of an indicator that Ferrero may have too much ego for the job he holds.

If there was any doubt on the part of other Stark Countians, then his handling of what Conley calls "Zeiglergate" should be a clincher.

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